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europe in mid february ?

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
it seems the only time i have for ski is mid february (i usually go in march or january). From what i gather it's holliday time in France, GB, Germany, Sweden. Have heard horror stories about skilift lines [img]graemlins/evilgrin.gif[/img] . My question : from your experience where is it less crowded ( lines shorter ) at this particular time: ST Anton, Tignes, 3 valees (les menuires), Les Arcs. Taking a ski school course makes things better?
Thanx for your input
post #2 of 9
Can't vouch for st. Anton, but of the others the 3v's les menuires, is probablyyour best bet at that time of year.....ok it's probably the ugliest place on the planet, but it is part of the biggest most efficient lift system in the world!..Tiignes is just too popular with brits at thet time of year and Les Arcs lift system just can't is getting better but still has too many fixed grip lifts.....A ski class won't be any help, just catch first lift to avoid lift lines...and make sure you have lunch before 11:30 or after 2:30 if at all...this is the quiet time on the hill in france!
post #3 of 9
It's also holiday time in Austria during Feb, different areas take holidays on different weeks. I will try to find out when the Tirolean (St Anton) children are on holiday. Can anybody confirm exactly when the French and English holidays are?

post #4 of 9
I believe that France now staggers its holidays so the whole country is not off at the same time in February but the bottom line is that part of France, possibly most of the UK (although the holidays in England/Wales may be consecutive to Scotland, but they may be the same !!) and probably large bits of the rest of the EU are likely to be on holiday when you are, so no easy way out Probably best for you to choose the biggest area eg Three Valleys and hope for the best and get up early when you are there.
post #5 of 9
For a good overview of ski areas in Europe and interesting comparisons of the good/bad points of each resort check this site:

Ski Europe

I have read their book and recommend it.

In general, I would choose the high altitude, snow sure, modern lift system resorts as priorities in Europe. Lean snow years can ruin a ski trip to lower elevation resorts.

Enjoy the food and charms of Europe!
post #6 of 9
English half term is now spread over two weeks rather than one. The worst week will be the one commencing 15th Feb, with the following week nearly as bad.

Stay away from resorts that are hugely popular with Brits like Tignes & Val d'Isere. I'd have thought St Anton would be better because it's got a reputation as a being for 'expert' skiers rather than children learning to ski.

If you can, go somewhere that isn't popular with British package holiday-goers. The biggest operator is Crystal ( and no, I don't particularly recommend them). Look for resorts they don't feature, or at least ones they don't recommend for families...

Being in ski school does help with lift lines, but as others have said if you go to France, ski over lunch.
post #7 of 9
One snow sure location in Europe (because of it's height) that doesn't get over-crowded is Obergurgl in Austria. It doesn't get too over crowded because -

1. The resort is at the end of a valley road so there are nearer resorts for the kids to get to. Very few visit Obergurgl for a day trip.

2. The accomodation in the town is limited to a few thousand.

Obergurgl is not for expert skiers, steep on-piste and off-piste is limited but it is great for begineers, intermediates and familes. Nearest Airport is Innsbruck approx 2 hr transfer time.

post #8 of 9
Head for Leysin. You can take day trips to Les Diablerets, Villars and Gstaad and there is a glacier as well.

There are no package holidays to Leysin except for a Club Med which confines itself to Leysin and very much keeps itself to itself. The resort mainly attracts local Swiss from the cantons of Geneve, Vaud and some from Valais. You get a few other tourists from other countries. You can also do day trips to excellent resorts like Crans Montana and Verbier but these places will be horribly crowded in mid-February.
post #9 of 9
Thread Starter 
i've found an european holiday timetable on the les arcs webpage. timetable hope this helps. anyway, i'm trying to find out more about St anton, but right now it looks like the 3 valee.
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